Mukayiranga Verena & Mugisha Gabriel & Sharangabo Jean de Dieu


Mukayiranga Verena is speaking with two of her adopted sons, Mugisha Gabriel and Sharangabo Jean de Dieu. She tells stories of her struggles with discrimination between the different ethnicities and how there was nothing but love between all Rwandese people before the colonists arrived. Verena shares how she lived in paralyzing fear during the war saying “I could not sleep well; I would think that people would come to kill us.” Despite being traumatized by her experiences she overcame her fear and shares her story with her sons.

Zimulinda Pheneas & Shingiro Remy


Full of questions concerning the history of religion in Rwanda and how Rwandan culture of the past differs from that of today, Shingiro Remy listens intently to the words of Zimulinda Pheneas, his counselor. Zimulinda Pheneas discusses the origins of churches in Rwanda, the issues of teen pregnancy and drug abuse, how children were traumatized even without going through the genocide, the effect of good parenting and community parenting, and his philosophy on education. He goes into detail on such subjects as rape, gendered violence, and prostitution.

Nsabimana Jean Pierre & Zaninka Scola


Zaninka Scola was born shortly after her father’s death and only got to know her mother for a short time before she died. In this story, her elder brother Nsabimana Jean Pierre shares with her all that she wants to know about their parents: their marriage, their values, their care for them as children. His message to her is partly summed up in a Rwandese proverb that means, ‘no one shall receive what they have not earned.’ He also passes to her the legacy given to him by their father that they must always share what they have with others.

Nyirahabimana Consolee & Mukeshimana Godelive


Nyirahabimana Consolee tells Mukeshimana Godelive stories about the way young girls acted before she was born, drawing on her own life and the stories her aunts told her. They include everything from weaving, the to difficulties with accepting advice, dealing with mothers-in-law, giving birth, changing traditions about co-wives, and much more.

"I can’t confirm that all the poor take a wrong way which will cause them more pain because of poverty. So even the poor can keep their dignities in their poverty and finally get their own families." Nyirahabimana Consolee

Mukankubana Rose & Kwizera Jean Pierre


Mukankubana Rose tells her son about finding strength as an orphan, as a widow, and as a mother, and the secret to raising children in difficult times. Kwizera Jean Pierre is curious about the influence of their older family members, the hardest decision she had to make between education and the love she had for her family, and a book written by his uncle.

Twahirwa Deborah & Tuyishimire Florence


When a large number of children were orphaned by the genocide, it became difficult for many of them to find people to replace their families and get advice from. Twahirwa Deborah tells Tuyishimire Florence the ways orphans can see love and comfort in the world so they can hope for a brighter future, and how all Rwandans must forget about their differences and become one family.

Habineza Pascal & Mwubahamana Shalon


Growing up as an orphan, Mwubahamana Shalon is curious about the life of other orphans and asks her uncle, Habineza Pascal, about how they live. She carefully listens to Habineza Pascal’s numerous experiences with taking care of orphans, as well as his advice. The story is full with Habineza Pascal’s aspirations for his niece and other orphans; to “do good things so that people around you will never see you in that image of being hopeless."

Umamwezi Philomene & Masengesho Rosine


Both Masengesho Rosine and her grandmother have experienced the hardships that women faced, the genocide, and life as orphans. But have never before spoken to one another about their lives. Umamwezi Philomene acknowledges the hurt and suffering women in particular have struggled with in Rwandan history, but sees a bright future for Masengesho Rosine through her youth and educational opportunities. Most importantly, she reminds her that all Rwandans should stand together for justice and peace, and being an orphan does not mean you cannot find a parent to advise you in times of need.

Mudenge Leopard & Manzi Erick


Although Manzi Erick is Mudenge Leopard’s brother, there are many things that he does not know about his sibling’s background. Mudenge Leopard tells his brother about his childhood, how he left home to earn a living, and emphasizes that the most important lesson he learned was to always strive to be on good terms with everyone. Manzi Erick asks important questions about how to get along with all people, including those who do not want to socialize or those from a different generation, and his brother offers advice.

Ingabire Janviere & Umurerwa Divine


Ingabire Janviere wishes to tell her sister Umurerwa Divine about all of the hardships that she has faced in her life. How “life after war became too bad.” Yet despite all of these struggles, she trusted God, found people to help her, and she endured. Umurerwa Divine learned a lot from her sister, and she said that she will continue to pray that God helps her throughout the rest of her life.


SEPTEMBER 2014 - Archival Science 14 (Nos. 3-4, 2014): 275-306. Available here


OCTOBER 2014 - Founder and Director Patricia Pasick, Ph.D. has been honored as a 2014 Purpose Prize Fellow which recognizes “outstanding social innovators over aged 60 who are working to change the world by finding solutions to challenging social problems.“

Recent Stories